Construction Demo – Quilted Gore Victorian Corset

Quilted and Flossed Silk Overbust - Quarter Front View, by Sidney Eileen

With all the panels together, the next step was sewing in the boning channels.  The pattern for this corset was not a direct copy of any particular Victorian corset, and instead I drew inspiration from several different corsets.  Most of them are chorded, but I did not intend to use chords.  The boning needed to support the full height of the corset and the gores without pressing against the gores in such a way that the bone ends created folds, creases, or un-even pressure.  To this end, none of the bones followed the seams.

Construction Demo - Quilted Gore Victorian Corset - 12, by Sidney Eileen

The boning channels in progress

The front panels of the corset are held with a diagonally fanned pattern of bones.  The left-hand panel as photographed below has all the channels sewn in place.  I started from the busk and worked my way out. The right-hand panel shows the chalk mark for the outermost pair of bones.  To make the mark I used a ruler and a rolling chalk marker, like the kinds marketed to quilters.

Construction Demo - Quilted Gore Victorian Corset - 13, by Sidney Eileen

This image shows the marked channel sewn in.  I also finished off the bottoms of the bust gore outlines, because I did not need them open to insert bones.

 

Construction Demo - Quilted Gore Victorian Corset - 14, by Sidney Eileen

Boning channels for the side panel

For the side panels I used pins to hold the layers together at the seams, and then sewed boning channels straight up the side.  In this part of the corset I decided to use a 1/2″ bone, couched on either side by 1/4″ bones.

Construction Demo - Quilted Gore Victorian Corset - 15, by Sidney Eileen

The boning at the back for the grommets is totally normal.

The boning at the back for the grommets is totally normal.  It’s a 1/4″ bone to the outside edge, a 5/8″ gap for the size #0 grommets, and another 1/4″ bone.  The one thing that bears mentioning is the little bit of black you can see sticking out of the grommet area at the top and bottom on both sides.  I sewed a wide strip of twill tape into the corset along with the boning channels.  This helps to re-enforce the grommets and is extra insurance they won’t pop free under stress.

Construction Demo - Quilted Gore Victorian Corset - 16, by Sidney Eileen

All boning channels sewn

The last two boning channels are two small bones facing diagonally up from the grommet bones.  These are a common feature on historic corsets, which helps to keep the high back upright.

 

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